Block ads via the hosts file in Android or Linux

Also in today's open source roundup: Nokia will release Android phones, and Google will introduce a voice-activated device for the home

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Block ads via the hosts file in Linux or Android

Ad blocking is all the rage these days, with many users deciding that they’ve had enough of obnoxious ads and being tracked all over the Web by advertising networks. But how can you use your hosts file to block ads?

This very question came up in a recent thread on the Linux subreddit, and some of the answers were quite helpful:

PMMeSexyScripts: “I recently tried AdAway on my Android phone, and was surprised at how effective it was. I already use uBlock Origin on Firefox, but I am interested to know whether there is a way to block ads like this too. It would be great if there was an application that can do that. ”

Adblockthrowaway: “In the terminal:

sudo nano /etc/hosts

Add whatever lists you want then press: ctrl + x, y and finally enter.”

Acerface1: “This script works great for me.

Auto updates the hosts file to block ads

drakofost: “You can also use a graphical editor if you want to, like gedit.

sudo gedit /etc/host

There are host files that you can download, they contain the addresses used by ads and tracking tools. These two are the most popular ones.

Dimkr: “

These two solve the problem.”

Syl0s: “You can copy your hosts-file from your Android-phone to your desktop Linux-installation, if you want. They are both under /etc/hosts…”

More at Reddit

Nokia will release Android phones

Nokia is a name that used to be synonymous with phones, but that link fell away with Microsoft’s acquisition of the company a while back. Now Nokia is getting ready to release a new generation of Android-based phones.

Cam Bunton reports for 9to5Google:

Nokia Technologies announced in a press release this morning that it has signed an agreement with HMD global to build “a new generation of Nokia-branded mobile phones and tablets.” Although we don’t know exactly what flavour of Android, or how heavily skinned it will be, Nokia’s announcement states that Google’s mobile OS will be powering the new devices.

Following a disastrous few years in the hands of Microsoft, it’s great to see Nokia’s brand live on. In the days before Android and iOS became the smartphone duopoly, Nokia was undoubtedly the biggest phone maker in the world. Its brand name was stronger than anyone’s. And now, it’s coming back, thanks to a newly-founded company called HMD, which was founded purely to give the Nokia brand a new home.

Nokia basically just found a way to reform itself legally, bring senior staff back, and start making Android phones. Technically, of course, that’s not what happened. HMD is a brand new company. It just happens to be making Nokia-branded phones exclusively, and have some former Nokia and Microsoft people leading it to make Android devices, which it arguably should have done as soon as it was obvious that Symbian OS was not the future of smartphones. Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

More at 9to5Google

Google to introduce voice-activated home device

Voice activated home devices are an increasingly popular category of devices, and Google is poised to jump into that market with its own offering called Google Home.

David Streitfeld:

Google will introduce its much-anticipated entry into the voice-activated home device market on Wednesday, according to people who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Named Google Home, the device is a virtual agent that answers simple questions and carries out basic tasks. It is to be announced at Google’s annual developers’ conference in Silicon Valley.

Google Home will come to market in the fall — a long time away, given the speed of technology, but Google needed to plant a stake in the ground now. The device will compete with Amazon’s Echo, which was introduced less than two years ago. Amazon has already sold an estimated three million units.

More at the NY Times

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